Music Industry

Published on September 11th, 2017 | by Alan Cross


The Music Industry is Finally Going to Fix Metadata So Everyone Can Get Paid

In the old days of vinyl and compact discs, liner notes featured everything anyone ever needed to know about who was involved in the making of a record. In the digital age, though, a lot of this information–known as metadata–has been lost. As a result, credit is not always going where credit is due. This means a bunch of people are not getting paid.

Chef Mike found this article on Wired that explains what the music industry is doing about it. Finally.

Publishers might keep track of who wrote the underlying composition of a song, or the session drummer on a recording, but that information doesn’t always show up in a digital file’s metadata. This disconnect between the person who composed a song, the person who recorded it, and the subsequent plays, has led to problems like writers and artists not getting paid for their work, and publishers suing streaming companies as they struggle to identify who is owed royalties. “It’s a simple question of attribution,” says [Panos A. Panay, of the design consultancy Ideo, and a handful of others at the school’s Institute For Creative Entrepreneurship]. “And payments follow attribution.”

Over the last year, members of the OMI—almost 200 organizations in total—have worked to develop just that.

Keep reading.


About the Author

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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